Search engines use links to determine the relevancy and authority of a website. The more relevant and high-quality links a website (or an individual page) has, the more likely it is to rank higher in search results.
In this tutorial, we're going to show how to build high-quality, editorial and relevant links by finding the link generating keywords and creating linkable content.
When done right, this strategy helps to generate quality links 100% on autopilot.
🟢 Link Intent Keywords
To get links, you need to have linkable content. This means content that is informative and useful enough that other website owners will want to link to it.
But simply having great content isn't enough. You also need to have the right content.
The right content is the one that targets the keywords content creators (bloggers, journalists, website owners, and others) are deliberately searching for writing their own content.
We call these "link intent" keywords.
There are three main types of link intent keywords:
Links are still important for SEO. In fact, they remain one of the most important ranking factors.
- Statistics, research and facts keywords - these are the keywords that people use when looking for data to back up their content. For example, "Marketing statistics", "link building case studies", etc.
- Specific data-related keywords - these are the keywords (mainly questions) that people use when looking for specific data to include in their articles. For example, "how many people read books?" (as opposed to “reading statistics” which belongs to the first type of link intent keyword)
- Free tools - calculators, generators, and other helpful tools that people can use. For example, “free SEO audit tool” or “mortgage calculator”. This type of content attracts links from resource pages and blogs that feature helpful tools and utilities.
Now, let's see what methods we can use to find link-generating keywords.
To find link intent keywords, start by brainstorming a list of potential topics that your target audience would be interested in.
Target audience in this case are people who have access to websites, publish content and are looking for information or sources to support their content.
When they find the information or source they were looking for, this usually ends up with a link.
- Who are you trying to reach?
- What kind of information do they need?
Once you know who your target audience is, you can start brainstorming topics that they write about.
Then add a link intent component to each topic and check it on Ahrefs (or an alternative).
The link intent component is something that people are deliberately searching for when looking for information that needs to be backed by a source (link).
Look at the potential (search volume, competition, number, and quality of referring domains pointing to the top ten results) and try to determine if the keyword (topic plus link intent component) looks promising.
Here are some proven variants:
- case studies
2️⃣ Standard Keyword Research
Start by entering "statistics" or "facts" as a seed keyword:
Then go to Keyword Ideas and play with filters to find the keywords you are looking for:
This will uncover thousands of keywords for you to choose from, which is the advantage and at the same time disadvantage of this method.
The advantage is that you will have plenty of keywords to target. The disadvantage is that most of these keywords will be irrelevant or too competitive (despite of Keyword Difficulty filter).
So, you'll need to put in extra work to find the best link generating keywords using this method.
- Degree, Master, Bachelor (keywords containing these words are usually about education)
- What (what + statistics doesn’t make a link generating topic)
3️⃣ Reverse Engineering Competitors Keywords
Another method that can help you find link generating keywords is to reverse engineer your competitor's link generating keywords.
This method is simple. Just plug in your competitor's domain into Ahrefs Site Explorer and go to Best by links report.
This will show you all the pages on your competitor's website that have the most links. These are generally their most successful link generating pieces.
Your task is here is to analyze each of these URLs and find the link generating keywords they are targeting.
Note: you can use this method for any domain, not just your competitor's.
4️⃣ Look at Statistics Websites
There are many websites that collect data from various sources and present it in an easily digestible format. These websites generally have high domain authority and rank for thousands of interesting link driving keywords.
Some of these websites are:
To find more of these websites in your niche, just do a search for "[niche] + statistics" or "[niche] + data".
For example, if we're in the SEO niche, a few relevant searches would be "SEO statistics", "SEO data", etc.
These websites are generally a great source of link driving keywords that you can target.
So, you can just take their keywords and use them for your own link building efforts.
5️⃣ Check specific questions in your own keywords
If you already have link generating content on your website that ranks well in search engines, then another method could be to check the keywords that it ranks for and looking at specific questions you can answer with a separate article.
Usually, one article would rank high (first 1-4 positions) for a set of keywords, but it will also rank for a lot of long-tail keywords that you might not have thought of.
These long-tail keywords could be potential link generating keywords for you to target.
You can analyze keywords you rank for with tools like Ahrefs and Semrush.
There are many methods that can help you find link generating keywords. The ones covered in this article should get you started.
Remember, the goal is not just to find keywords, but to find the right keywords. The right keywords are those that will help you generate links while being relevant to your audience.
If you put in the work to find the right keywords, you'll be well on your way to generating links and driving traffic to your website.